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Tip of the Week #65 - Fighting with Harvesters

By ^Cerby- - 26th April 2010 - 17:07 PM

Harvesters are vehicles that brave many hazards, going about their business of gathering Tiberium and keeping your economy up and rollicking. But though peaceful in appearance, they have other uses as well. Just turn a docile GDI Harvester against your opponent, and suddenly you have a mean machine ready at hand with its heavy armor, crushing tracks and a light machine gun, a hindrance to your opponent's plans. In the other camp, the Nod Harvester can be a stealthy menace, threatening to mow down large numbers of infantry unseen, and forcing your enemy to deploy stealth detection. In short, Harvesters can act as lifesavers for a brief period, until such time as your own counter-attack forces arrive.

Date: April 26, 2010
Game: Tiberium Wars 1.09
This tip will show you how to go about using your Harvesters on the battlefield. Bear in mind though, this tip works only for GDI and Nod Harvesters, as Scrin Harvesters cannot crush nor are they armed.

The basics

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GDI Harvester:

  • Cost: 1400
  • Hitpoints: 7500
  • Armament: Light Machine Gun
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Nod Harvester:

  • Cost: 1400
  • Hitpoints: 5000
  • Armament: None
  • Particularity: Stealthed
Have you ever thought about your Harvester's offensive abilities? To go on the offensive even during an emergency or during an infantry rush? Think again. If your Harvesters are close at hand and you micro them well, they can be a force to be reckoned with on their own, and they leave a mark for themselves as they crush and mow through dozens of soldiers.

While the GDI Harvesters wreak havoc with their heavy armor and miniguns blazing, Nod Harvesters may use stealth to wipe a large force of infantry and leave your opponent wondering what hit them.

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The GDI Harvester

Let's have a look at the GDI Harvester. Its top-mounted gun is meant for defense, so do not expect large amounts of damage. However, these Harvesters can come in handy during an Engineer rush or when taking down a single scout team of Militants or Riflemen. The top-mounted machine gun has a short range and does only limited damage to structures and vehicles. However, one-on-one the heavily armored GDI Harvester can take down an APC.

One important point to note: The GDI Harvester is the only Harvester in the game that can gain veterancy and eventually become heroic. Once they become heroic, your opponent will have a lot more trouble taking your Harvesters out.

Achieving heroic status is not easy for Harvesters and takes some doing. In fact, we are yet to see a heroic Harvester in action, and you may be the first one to hit the Hall of Fame with your heroic Harvester. Remember to keep your Harvesters repaired after battle at your War Factory. If there are too many tanks nearby, keep your Harvesters safe, as sending them anywhere near the tanks would be nothing short of suicide.

Harvesters can also act as interceptors when your main base comes under attack from small forces, such as two or three APCs with Engineers in them. Sending a few Harvesters to intercept can be very effective as you watch the APCs trying to dodge, reverse, dart back and forth to no avail. The Engineers inside dare not embark for fear of your Harvesters' ever rattling machine gun. Be careful as you need to scout and be wary of any early intrusions or rushes.

At times you may discover an early APC rush, in which case your Pitbulls or a few Predators will make light work of them. Be wary of the last-minute Engineer release as this is where your Harvester can come in handy, picking off the Engineer with a few quick bursts.

Always aim to have at least two Harvesters for each Refinery and stay alert at all times.

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Nod Harvesters

The Nod Harvester is not as heavily armored as GDI's version, but it has one trick up the sleeve: It is cloaked. This is not surprising, considering that Nod relies on sneaky tactics and stealth attacks.

In the early game you may even try sneaking one of your Harvesters towards your opponent's Tiberium field. You can watch with glee as it quietly gathers a full load and returns. You must be careful as it may automatically go there again, and this time your opponent may have defenses to detect stealth.

If trying to clean up your opponent's Tiberium Field under stealth was not enough, you can also go about stealthily crushing your opponent's infantry, leaving him bewildered and forcing him to bring out stealth-detecting counters.

Hit and run tactics with this stealth Harvester can prove useful and an annoyance to your opponent.

Remember that your Harvesters, apart from doing their primary job of collecting Tiberium, have other uses as well. Do not worry if you see a mass of infantry rushing your way, apart from base defenses like the Watchtower you also have your Harvesters to clean them off. Using the Harvester's armor and brute force to your advantage can turn the tide of battle.

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Enjoy this replay between EA_Ownz_You and Wanted on Tournament Arena. The replay was from tournament finals where EA_Ownz_You lines up six Harvesters to go against Wanted’s infantry.

Also, you may enjoy the video by Chalido that demonstrates the effectiveness of Harvesters in battle.

Part 1:

Part 2:

Thanks to Maverick and IKMS for co-authoring this tip!

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